NBA Africa to Strengthen Basketball in Nigeria with First Visit of Assistant Commissioner/CEO Mark Tatum

NBA Africa hosted a media roundtable with NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum, NBA Africa CEO Victor Williams, NBA Africa Vice President and Country Head for the Nigeria, Gbemisola Abudu, and Basketball Africa League (BAL) President Amadou Gallo Fall at the Wheatbaker in Lagos as part of the Deputy Commissioner’s first visit to Nigeria.

NBA leaders reiterated their commitment to providing more boys and girls in Nigeria with more opportunities to learn the fundamentals and core values ​​of the game and help grow and strengthen the basketball ecosystem -Nigerian ball.

This follows the launch of its first office in Nigeria earlier this year, which is also its third office in Africa, following those in Johannesburg, South Africa, and Dakar, Senegal. The organization is now poised to take another step in growing the game of basketball in Nigeria from the grassroots.

NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum:

“While we just opened an office here this year, Nigeria has been an important market for the NBA for decades, ever since Hall of Famers Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Oscar Robertson held basketball clinics here in 1971.

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And you cannot overestimate Nigeria’s incredible basketball talent and impact on the league. From Hakeem Olajuwon, who was selected with the number one pick in the 1984 NBA Draft, to six Nigerian players on NBA rosters this season, to double NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo, who is of course of Nigerian descent.

“We have opened an office in Lagos because we believe there is a huge opportunity for the NBA in Nigeria and because the continued growth of basketball here can be a catalyst for the rest of the continent. We want to help accelerate the growth of basketball and help develop an environment in which Nigerian youth have a predictable pathway to learn the game and maximize their potential.

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NBA Africa CEO Victor Williams:

“NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum is here this week, along with a delegation of other NBA leaders, and it speaks to our continued commitment to growing the game of basketball in Nigeria, to strengthening the basketball ecosystem, connect with our fans and build the NBA brand and business in Nigeria.

Nigeria already makes a significant contribution to the NBA in terms of players, coaches, executives and leaders at all levels, so this is a really big and significant market for the NBA in Africa, and we are really excited. to be here this weekend. spend time in the country, meet with various stakeholders and promote what the NBA seeks to do in Nigeria.

Gbemisola Abudu, Vice President of NBA Africa and Country Manager for Nigeria:

“When we say we are investing in Nigeria, that is exactly what we are doing. We invest from a human capability perspective, ensuring our fans can experience the NBA. This is very important and shows our commitment to the country.

Amadou Gallo Fall, President of the BAL:

“The second season of BAL, broadcast in 215 countries and territories, featured 12 of the best club teams from across the continent and demonstrated just how much talent and passion there is for basketball in Africa. We are delighted with the momentum we are seeing building across the continent as we prepare for another exciting season. FIBA Africa has conducted the draw for the Road to the BAL’s Elite 16 Qualifying Tournament, and we can’t wait to find out which teams will be competing in the BAL next year.

“Nigeria has a rich basketball culture and tradition, and we are delighted that Nigerian teams can once again compete in international competitions.”

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